It's a long time since the Stereo MCs connected (ouch!) with the charts and, despite the best efforts of the Get Loaded In The Park organisers, acid house is long dead. However, the first full release on the Stereos' own Graffiti Records imprint proves that they still have a place in today's electro-dominated musical landscape.
'Paradise' is a dreamy glitch-funker that updates the band's sound, while retaining the optimism that made us fall in love with them all those years ago. It is driven by ice-cold tech beats, warmed through with waves of brass, and taken to an ethereal plane by Rob B's echoing half-spoken, half-sung vocals.
Uninspired remixes by DJ Rubberfunk and the Stereos themselves do little more than beef up 'Paradise' for the clubs, leaving it to Paul Daley of Leftfield to do the true reinterpreting. Daley's Vocal Mix tweaks the tune into an acid-electro stormer, but the real shock is his Escape From Paradise dub, which strips the song down to a minimal bleep melody and tribal drums of almost clockwork urgency.
Whether 'Paradise', the forthcoming album of the same name, and a Get Loaded appearance are enough to spark a genuine Stereo MCs revival remains to be seen, but the lead single is at least proof that the band are still relevant.